Review by Publisher's Weekly Review
Love may be the catalyst for the American white wedding, but hosting an elaborate celebration also demonstrates a family's prosperity and material success, argues Jellison in her compelling economic and social history of how this ritual survived despite the major cultural and political changes of the 1960s and beyond. Jellison, an associate professor of history at Ohio University, argues that while the white wedding of the 1940s may have celebrated youth, virginity and a patriarchal family structure, Americans have reinterpreted the symbolism of satin and lace: the 21st-century bride evokes the tradition of female-focused celebration and uses the elaborate and costly event as a display of her professional and social success as she marks a life transition. With chapters on celebrity nuptials, silver-screen I-dos and the latest batch of reality TV brides, Jellison demonstrates how advertisers, media and brides themselves slowly reshaped the white wedding into an act of organized feminism. This book is in the same genre as Rebecca Mead's 2006 One Perfect Day and will attract both academic and lay readers. The well-footnoted prose is accessible, and the 50 photographs and advertisements vividly demonstrate the changing trends Jellison outlines. (Mar.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Review by Library Journal Review
Jellison (history, Ohio Univ.; Entitled to Power: Farm Women and Technology, 1913-1963). takes an in-depth look at the history and popularity of the American "white wedding" and in doing so provides a unique exploration of late 20th- and early 21st-century American culture. She starts right after World War II and progresses through celebrity, royal, and movie weddings to the "reality weddings" of today and how the ritual of a white wedding has been adapted in many same-sex marriages. Seasoned throughout with images of bridal shower games, advertisements for elaborate wedding gowns, and other consumer goods with a bridal theme, Jellison's book views the wedding "business" from all pop cultural perspectives. An enlightening and fascinating read, her book is sure to be of interest in most libraries, especially those with women's studies or popular culture collections.-Nicole Mitchell, Univ. of Alabama Lib., Birmingham (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.